Silver with gold sheet overlay, garnets
L. 6 5/8 in. (16.7 cm)
Fletcher Fund, 1947 (47.100.19)
This brooch is a luxury version of the kind worn by eastern Germanic women living along the lower and middle Danube River in the fourth and fifth centuries. Usually worn in pairs, brooches were used to pin together the shoulders of a woman's garment. While the most common brooches were made from unadorned silver sheet, this resplendent and exceptionally large brooch is covered in gold sheet decorated with beaded and twisted gold wire, gold granulation, and an array of multishaped garnets. It was undoubtedly worn by an aristocratic woman and would have been part of a rich ensemble of gold jewelryconsisting of collars with pendants, armlets, and ringsincluded in her burial.